Every night, the wife and I read a couple bedtime stories to our young kids. One of my daughter’s favorites is Dr Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
We both recommend it highly. If you don’t have it – get it now..
The story speaks to “you,” a young boy. He learns all about life’s potential greatness as well as its dangers and difficulties.
I read it again recently and one part keeps popping in my head. The story warns the boy about getting lost in life’s “rat race.” Not taking action, but instead just …waiting.
Dr. Seuss’ words about waiting
The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.
Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a sting of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.
Clearly to Dr. Seuss, waiting is not a good thing. (& I agree)
Enter Franz Kafka. As a writer, he’s one of the all-time greats. As a boy born in Prague in a German Jewish family, Kafka struggled with identity. A minority of a minority. He didn’t accept it well. It was tough times for Franz and his writing shows it. His dark writing style was usually about “senseless, disorienting, often menacing complexity.” (sources)
What’s Kafka say about waiting?
Kafka’s words about Waiting
You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.
In a Nutshell…
There you have it.
Seuss says: waiting = bad
Kafka says: waiting = good
Why do I mention this? Because it mirrors a tough decision for us these days. I said in a past post, we know our future lies between two cities: New York City, USA and Halifax, Canada.
In one city, we have a chance of a grand opportunity. An exciting chance in an exciting city. But it’s not for certain. Instead we must wait. Out of our control, we wait. Kafka says it’s all fine, …”it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.”
In the other city, we also have uncertainty but the choice is completely in our control. We take that choice and wake up believing whatever we want to believe.
What are your thoughts?
Anyway, this is what’s weighing heavily on our minds today and the past few weeks.
Thanks for reading,